Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Wannabe Spring

Although it is not quite spring, these last few days have been wonderfully close.
Last weekend I went home to visit the family and my boy Vader. For those who need to be told, horses like it when we get a weather break like this in the middle of winter. Having gone months (in Vader's case) being in a stall getting out to stretch his legs for maybe an hour total daily, the idea of finally being let outside to play is overwhelming.

So as I head over to the barn preparing myself to chase him down in pasture, I find that all the horses are inside! Sure it was a little wet out, but I couldn't imagine being locked up on such a beautiful day! I found the reason shortly, outside the horses turn out doors was a few feet of piled up snow. Sadness. Luckily for Vader I was there! I let him out in the indoor arena while I gathered my things from the tack room. Usually Vader just rolls then stands at the gate waiting for me to get him ready. Today was a different story. No sooner had I unlatched his lead did he rear and take off across the arena, bucking and farting the entire way. It was at this point I decided it may be a good idea to go in there and tire him out before I climbed on his back. A good forty minutes later Vader finally slowed his frantic gallop to a containable canter. After another half hour this crazed gelding finally slowed to a walk. Usually it takes a lot of chasing to get Vader to move at all when warming him up, but today he suffered from what I have come to call the SweetNorthernSaint syndrome.

For those of you who remember, SweetNorthernSaint is Vader's Thoroughbred doppelganger.

From the first time Vader had seemed to switch personalities in the warm up ring and acted more like a Thoroughbred, I have been calling him SweetNorthernSaint. It has become an inside joke among my family and horse friends.

"What's wrong with Vader today?" They may ask. "He's a little crazier today."
"That's not Vader," I reply, "It's SweetNorthernSaint."

Although Vader is a Quarter Horse, he has a lot of Thoroughbred in him. His pedigree papers go back to his great great grand sire. Just past this slot on his dam's side, he turns all Thoroughbred. So his Thoroughbred days are justified.

Hopefully by now the snow has melted and Vader can go play racehorse in the fields!

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